Russia Shuts Off Ukrainian Gas

1. Russia has suspended sales of NG to the Ukraine as a complication of a "politically charged price row."

2. Russian NG exports to the EU are carried though a Ukrainian pipeline.

3. Gas deliveries to some European customers have fallen drastically.

4. The Russians are accusing the Ukrainians of drawing off gas that doesn't belong to them.

5. The Ukrainians deny this allegation and, further, accuse the Russians of "jeopardising Western European supplies.

6. The Ukrainians apparently assert that although they have ceased drawing off Russian gas they nevertheless have a right to 15% of it as a commission for allowing it to be conducted through their pipeline.

7. 20% of Eurozone NG comes from Russia.

8. EU's Energy Commissioner says he's worried because Russians gave assurances that EU supplies would not be affected by Russian Ukrainian dispute.

9. "Many Ukrainians believe Russia is punishing them for their Orange Revolution and the election of Western-leaning President Viktor Yushchenko.

Other countries which remain in Russia's sphere of influence continue to receive gas at below-market prices."

"Ukraine gas row hits EU supplies " 1 January 2006
No , we import 5% of our Gas. However, it does affect Poland and Hungary , and the Ukranians , contrary to Russia's "advice" appear to have been helping themselves to Gas already paid for in hard currency by other countries.

Of course a cynical man might look at the four-fold increase in Gas prices and Russia busy re-nationalising the old Maf ... oooops Private enterprise businesses

Watch out for Putin making a humanitarian gesture to Ukraine, and getting the US or Western Europe to pay for it.

Innocent hard done by Ukraine? Yeah right.
We might be ok for now, but it looks like we might have to sit up in the future, I would not like to have to rely on the Russians for anything

gas pipe line inports

"By 2010 the United Kingdom will be importing around 50% of its gas requirements. This is likely to rise to around 70% in 2020," the House of Lords report said."

Looks like Maggie's idea to close all the mines and inport gas might not have been such a good one after all?
...and bang on cue , News24 reporting US State Department has just issued a staement along the lines that "They hoped energy supplies weren't being used as political tools" or some such.

Someone in State has a sense of irony.
Right, permit me a flight of fancy for a few lines:

Ukraine continues to 'siphon off' gas for its own use, knowing that it doesn't actually have enough to guarantee supplies throughout a cold winter.

Russia continues to thump the tub over the theft of its gas and issues further ultimatums. It also knows that the Ukraine has given up all its nuclear weapons.

Finally (given that Russia wants to remind the Ukraine who is boss and that Russia is not pleased about the orange revolution), Russian troops start to move in order to guarantee the security of the provision of gas to their customer in Europe. They are welcomed in the Eastern half of Ukraine, but push on westwards.

All of a sudden the amount of time spent exercising in Poland becomes rather relevant, with images from 1940 being broadcast on the TV and Poland, fearing invasion, calls for assistance from its NATO allies.

Where's Tom Clancy when you need him?

Alternatively the Khokholsti just pony up...

Anyone have intel. on the state of the Russian military? Most of wwhat I've read/heard paints a very poor picture of Ivan, low morale, units understrength, lack of equipment...hang on, that sounds like us.
Seriously, does anyone think the Xvans are still up for it after the humiliation of Chechnya?
countdokku said:
Seriously, does anyone think the Xvans are still up for it after the humiliation of Chechnya?
Sounds like exactly the reason they would be up for it - to prove they still have a mighty army.

Sounds like Russia is trying to perpetuate a form of control over the Ukraine. Will we see the Russian Black Sea fleet being blockaded in next? Not that it would matter much, those rusty tubs could do with a few weeks in port to tidy them up.
It might be time to buy some shares in WD 40 if they are going to try an fire up all their old tubs! :)

I have tried quick a search on their military state of prep, but surprisingly little up to date info found.

Anyone recommend a good site for info on the Ivans, surely someone (paranoid septic?) on the net must be keeping an keep an eye on them.
I was in Sevastopol last year and saw the state of the Black Sea fleet. Pure scrap.
Its gonna end in tears .... Ivan seems to be just making an excuse to go for the Ukraine, perfect oppourtunity really, everyone else is too busy in the big sandpit to really get in their way, leaving instant sunshine as an alternative and that would only wreck what your trying to save.

As for the Black Sea Fleet??? at least they have a fleet that'l fill a harbour!!! unlike the current state of affairs the Navy finds itself in thanks to the great leader and his pals.... :evil: Best get them carriers built, oh and lets keep the Sea Harrier for a bit longer eh, you never know when they may come in handy!!

German postings on the cards again???
Sevastopol certainly wasn't full when I was there - unless you count a full complement of rusting subs in their pens.
I see a mistake in the title of this thread.

Russia shuts off Russian gas to Ukraine. As to gas for European consumers then it runs in requested voulumes. Just I have heard on 'Echo of Moscow' radio that Ukraine ... 'borrowed' from begin of this year 100ml. cubic meters of NG = $25mln.

As to motivation then of course requested price for Ukraine is politically motivated. But do you think that the Cuban blockade is only economically motivated? Now imagine that USA sell oil to Castro for $13 per barrel and Cuba recells it to other countries for market price. Suppose that in this imaginary situation USA would demand $55 per barrel. Absurd?

I think this logical decision is simply the end of absurd situation when Ukraine sells gas to Romania for $250 per cubic meter.

If Ukraine doesn't like proposed Russian price $230 (Yushchenko wants $80) it can ask Norway to sell NG to Ukraine for $80. Norwegians would probably disagree, so why should Russia support openly anti-Russian politicians?

As now Ukrainian leadership wants to join NATO and EU then Ukraine must face market realities as Polland or Hungary. When they were Soviet satelites then they enjoyed laughable prices for oil and gas but now pay market price $250.

As to reliability of Russia as a business partner then even in years of the Cold war there were no problems with Russian oil or gas.

Personal notes: I'm at 1/2 Ukrainian, my wife is Ukrainian but we support the decision to cut gas for Ukraine. We both have a lot of ralatives there. By the way aunt of my with lives in a big village near Dnepropetrovsk and pays for gas (it is used for heating of her house) less than Russian customers.
Fiji_Bob said:
It might be time to buy some shares in WD 40 if they are going to try an fire up all their old tubs! :)

Anyone recommend a good site for info on the Ivans, surely someone (paranoid septic?) on the net must be keeping an keep an eye on them.
Joel Skousen says that the loudly announced deterioration of Russian military power following the end of the Cold War is only partly factual and is partly disinformation:


As for military weakness, only the manpower side of Russian military was allowed to collapse. The Russians purposely failed to pay troops or to maintain normal living standards within the ranks, leading to bad feelings and discontent. However, Russian production and development of high tech conventional military equipment has been ongoing. Huge stockpiles of tanks and mobile artillery were simply taken out of current inventory and stockpiled. They remain dispersed in depots beyond the Ural Mountains as part of the Conventional Forces Treaty signed with the US and NATO. This neat little treaty allowed the Russians to match US reduction in forces without actually destroying equipment--the Russians only had to put their tanks "out of reach." In fact, the Russians brought back some of that inventory during the Chechen conflict, and the US let them get away with it without so much as an official protest. Additionally, although many of the rank-and-file soldiers have left the military, the Russians did not decommission their huge corps of officers and NCOs. Thus, Russia maintains a suspiciously top-heavy manpower structure allowing it to refill the ranks of soldiers in a matter of months should war break out.


What about Russia’s highly touted disarmament of nuclear forces? This, too, is a grand deception, aided and abetted by US arms controllers. The older, out-dated aspects of the Russian military complex are on display to give the appearance of disarmament. Much of that has been dismantled at US taxpayer expense. US public television and the Clinton Pentagon joined forces to promote the image of Russian nuclear weakness with a highly doctored presentation entitled Missiliers, about the crumbling Soviet arsenal. A naive US General Habiger of US Strategic Command lent his credentials to the widely publicized TV documentary, which supposedly showed an inside view of the old and decrepit Soviet-era nuclear bunkers. It fact, they were too old and too decrepit to be credible. US missiliers who saw the documentary refused to believe those facilities were operational. With the exception of one limited view of the new SS-27 missile launcher, the US has never been allowed to see Russian’s modern arsenal of weapons. Many of the older SS-18 ICBMs were dismantled in the 1990s with US taxpayer funds. The warheads, however, were not dismantled, but were given back to the Russians for recycling into their new missiles. The Russians are clearly implementing Sun Tzu’s classic war doctrine of "feigning weakness" prior to a strike.


The top secret Russian military-industrial complex is in full production, but it is now quite separated from the normal, visible economy. Many suspect that Western aid and loans are almost exclusively funneled into these hidden portions of the Russian economy. This sustains the need for continual funding from the West to support the deprived civilian economy in Russia. However, despite feigning weakness, the Russians are continuing to build tremendous new nuclear/biological and chemical weapons systems--all with the assistance of US technology transfers.

In the late 1980s, the Soviet Union was seen deploying biological warheads for their multiple-warhead SS-18 ICBMs. As late as the early 1990s, after the signing of agreements pledging to destroy all biological and chemical warfare stocks, bona fide defectors from Russia gave testimony of massive cheating on biological and chemical weapons programs. Again, no protest was forthcoming from the US and no sanctions were imposed.

Russia is now deploying, on average, three new SS-27 missiles (also called the Topol-M--a 6th generation ballistic missile with active maneuvering capability to evade interception) per month--replacing older SS-19 missiles located at the Sarakov missile based some 450 miles southeast of Moscow. The SS-27 can carry up to 10 small nuclear warheads, or can be armed with a single massive H-bomb developed by the Arzamas-16 site of the Russian Ministry of Atomics (MINATOM). According to Russian weapons engineers, the new Arzamas warhead has an explosive force equal to over half a million tons of TNT. The Washington Times has reported that, in 1995 and 1996, this weapons developer illegally obtained US-made IBM supercomputers exported with Clinton administration approval. The supercomputers were exported directly to the Russian weapons lab, using false commercial and non-military contracts. This was in direct violation of US law. IBM pled guilty to the illegal export and paid a $8.5 million fine for their illegal sale, but the damage was already done. Later evidence proved that the Clinton administration actually facilitated the sale and gave IBM assurances of protection. The Russians intend to build a total of 500 of these mobile missiles, each one capable of mounting the full range of nuclear, biological or chemical warheads. This is truly an ominous weapons system, and should be our main concern in terms of designing an Anti-Ballistic Missile Defense. We built our last modern ICBM (the MX "Peacekeeper" missile) over 10 years ago, and will begin disarming them unilaterally in 2003.

The Russian ABM system is composed of hundreds of SA-5 and SA-10 anti-aircraft/anti-missile missiles.

Moscow not only has its nominal 100 ABM missiles, as permitted by the treaty, but also several thousand other SAM interceptors, many of which have been upgraded with ABM capabilities. In total, Russia has 12,000 SAM/ABM interceptors at 280 sites. The SA-10 is a totally new missile now from what it used to be and continues to be fitted with nuclear warheads (unlike our dumbed-down proposed ABM system that has no warhead at all). Russia has 18 huge battle-management radar installations located around the periphery of the country, as well as in space, to direct their ABM system. Upgrades of these radar sites as new construction of several more were carried out during the ABM treaty negotiations. US and NATO spy satellites detected these violations, but only one radar unit was halted. It was finished two years ago and the US failed to protest this violation of the ABM treaty. Yet Russia still demands that we abide by the treaty.

Further, the Russians are building huge underground nuclear bunkers and weapons production facilities in the Ural Mountains, clearly intended to function during a nuclear war. "Yamantau Mountain is the largest nuclear-secure project in the world," said US Congressman Roscoe Bartlett (R-Md). "They have very large train tracks running in and out of it [actually 5 tracks wide], with enormous rooms carved inside the mountain. It has been built to resist a half dozen direct nuclear hits, one after the other in a direct hole. It's very disquieting that the Russians are doing this when they [supposedly] don't have $200 million to build the service module on the international space station and can't pay housing for their own military people." Ken Timmerman, one of the best sources of information on the subject says, "The Russians have constructed two entire cities over the site, known as Beloretsk 15 & 16, which are closed to the public, each with 30,000 workers. No foreigner has ever set foot near the site. A US military attaché stationed in Moscow was turned back when he attempted to visit the region a few years ago..."

In public testimony before a House Armed Services Subcommittee last October, KGB defector Col. Oleg Gordievsky said the KGB had maintained a separate, top-secret organization, known as Directorate 15, to build and maintain a network of underground command bunkers for the Soviet leadership -- including the vast site beneath Yamantau Mountain. When pictures of this complex were published on the front page of the New York Times in 1996, the CIA was asked to respond. Keeping pace with the long standing secret government policy to protect Americans from any information that would point to a Russian threat, the CIA spokesman said the agency wasn’t worried--the huge Russian facility was purely "defensive." How do they know that when they admit that no US official has ever visited the site?

In 1998, US Strategic Commander (STRATCOM) General Eugene Habiger, the same naive commander who took part in the NPR propaganda documentary Missiliers, called Yamantau "a very large complex -- we estimate that it has millions of square feet available for underground facilities. We don't have a clue as to what they're doing there." No clue, general? Not even one clue? People this stupid obviously get to be generals because they are predictable yes-men in a military determined to purge out any future George Pattons or Douglas MacArthurs. I noticed in Missiliers that Habiger never mentioned the Russian military’s refusal to answer questions about Yamantau Mountain as he waxed eloquent about the deep camaraderie and trust he felt with his Russian military counterparts. If this is the best general we can find to head STRATCOM, the US is in mortal danger.

The Yamantau Mountain complex is not far from Russia's main nuclear weapons lab facility, Chelyabinsk-70. Honest military analysts suspect that Yamantau’s huge 400-square-mile underground complex houses nuclear warhead and missile storage sites, launch control, and several full-blown nuclear weapons factories--all designed to continue production after a nuclear war begins. The US has no equivalent to such extensive protected production facilities. According to Ken Timmerman, the Russian government has provided no fewer than 12 separate and contradictory explanations for the site, none of which are believed to be credible.

Russia also has a massive national command and control system dispersed among three different hardened underground locations. Besides Yamantau Mountain, there is the Kosvinsky Mountain underground complex and the Sherapovo bunker site, south of Moscow. Sherapovo is the primary command center for Russia's "civilian" leaders. The Kremlin is connected to Sherapovo and other bunkers by a secret subway line. Once at Sherapovo, they can conduct the war effort using a highly redundant communications system "allowing the leadership to send orders and receive reports through the wartime management structure," according to a 1988 Pentagon report.

Welcome to monopolistic capitalism folks. If Ukraine wants to snuggle up to NATO and the EU, it should be prepared to pay the same price as everyone else.

On the other hand, I think it's a little unfair for the Russians to abribrarily introduce this price shock. IIRC, Ukraine is willing to gradually increase the price it pays over time. This would allow for the economy and the country to search for other sources. Makes sense, but then Dobbie the House Elf, ahem excuse me, President Putin likes to throw his weight around a bit, doesn't he? He was obviously filled-in every day at school.
NWD, party of one, your tin-foil hat is ready.

I wouldn't give much credence to any article that cites Rep Roscoe Bartlett. He's one of the black helicopter brigade and is as mad as a box of frogs. He, quite literally, thinks that the UN has taken "partial ownership" of such places as the Grand Canyon and the Statue of Liberty because they were designated World Heritage Sites by UNESCO.

The trouble that Russia has, although it might still be producing pointy-end kit at a prodigious rate, is that they are not very good at maintaining and supporting it and the people that operate it. A number of post-Cold War studies have shown that they would not have been able to sustain a ground campaign against Western Europe for more than a few days as their logistics were shite.
crabtastic said:
Ukraine is willing to gradually increase the price it pays over time.
OK. But do you agree that the transition period would be paid by EU or the UK? Pay for Ukraine and that's all. Show your real support for young Ukrainian democracy.

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